Local Member for Yangoru-Saussia District and Minister for Trade Commerce & Industry, Richard Maru led a delegation to Boim-Sara villages to see the haustambaran over the weekend.
In a speech he delivered during this visit, Minster Maru thanked the villagers for the initiative to build that Cultural Preservation Centre.
He pledged his support for the project and highlighted that Boim-Sara is on the right track.
“PNG’s culture is fast fading away because of social problems faced in villages including the involvement of youths in the consumption of alcohol (steam) and drugs which is affecting the way they live. Papua New Guinea has so much potential to offer in terms of tourism. We have wildlife,pristine waters BUT we cannot attract tourists numbers compared to what Fiji attracts,” said Minister Maru.
“Every year, PNG gets about 3 to 400 000 tourists that visit the country compared to Fiji which is a small country in the Pacific with over 1.5 million tourists. One reason is that PNG does not have the tourism products to attract tourists into the country,” said Minister Maru.
“PNG hasn’t been investing enough on the tourism infrastructure and projects, despite our potential,” he said.
“I am absolutely convinced that East Sepik Province has bigger potential in the tourism sector which has not been tapped into. Our problem has been the lack of leadership in this province over the years to come up with a tourism Master Plan that will develop tourism products that will attract tourist numbers. In Wewak we have the beautiful Manny beach that has not been used to attract tourists. This is because there was no vision and no competent leadership in the past,” said Minister Maru.
He said East Sepik Province has the potential BUT it’s up to leaders and the people to rise up and harness the potential that the province has.If we don’t then the rest of the country will leave us behind.
“After building roads, bridges and bringing services like education and health into the District, we will develop a Tourism Master Plan to promote products like the HausTambaranproject of Boim-Sara village. We may have the projects BUT if law and Order is not present in the village, no tourists willvisit these projects in the District”.
Minister Maru told the people of Boim-Sara that the Government will only support the project with funding if there is no law and order problem.
He urged the people to stand together and support this project by helping to fight lawlessness within the village and the District.
The Minister also announced that a submission on the Boim-Sara Cultural Preservation project has been brought to NEC for endorsement.
He said once NEC approves the submission, a Super Highway worth 300 000 will be built into the Boim-Sara village so tourists can have access to the Cultural preservation project (HausTambaran).
Meanwhile, Director of Arts and Culture Division within the Office of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Robert Ketsin shared the same sentiments and thanked Boim-Sara village for initiating this project.
He said after the visit, he will discuss with relevant agencies that deals with Arts, Culture and Tourism to progress the project.
|Richard Maru and a visitor in Boim-Sara Village.|